March 23, 2012

Plastic Challenge: Pat Clancy, Week 7


How can I determine whether things are made of cellophane or plastic? For instance, the bag inside of the cereal box, or the see-through bags of granola, the window on the paper bread bag, etc.? Beth has made me think about all these things, and my count this week is higher than ever!

Location:Lisle, Illinois, United States

Name: Pat Clancy

Week: 7

Personal Info:

Divorced, retired female, live with one adult son. I am an organic gardener, grow some of my own vegetables and compost kitchen waste.

Pat Clancy’s personal blog:

List of plastic items REFUSED this week. (Yay!)
Plastic grocery bags; produce bags. I bought Better Than Boullion on line so I don’t need to buy ready-made broth in Tetra Paks. I canceled my Dr. Weil vitamin program, though I still have a couple of months’ worth to finish. I bought toilet paper from Seventh Generation on line to avoid the plastic wrapper.

Total items collected: 67

Total weight: 9 oz

Items: Recyclable
Vegetable tray #1 (given to me by a friend going on vacation)
Lid to vegetable tray #1
1 yogurt cup #5
5 plastic bags (sandwich bread, pita bread, newspaper, magazine, 2 worn out torn ones)
2 hummus containers #5 & #1
2 lids from hummus #1 & #4

Items: Nonrecyclable
1 piece Glad Wrap
3 pieces of bubble wrap (shipping of Better than Boullion)
2 plastic seals (hummus)
1 cheese wrapper
5 safety seals from bottles
1 plant label (found outside in the garden)
8 vitamin packets
1 honey bear bottle
1 shipping label
1 blister pack (probiotic)
9 window envelopes
1 shipping strap (birthday gift for granddaughter)
1 unsolicited membership card
3 tea bag wrappers
1 cookie wrapper (gift from friend)
1 wine cork
13 fruit labels
1 cereal bag
1 hook from a tag
1 tag from kale

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
I have canceled Dr. Weil’s vitamins which come in individual packets. Still using up.
Honey – find in a glass jar
Probiotic – ” ” ” ” ”
Tea bags

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
Boxed cereal
Precut vegetables in plastic clamshell

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
I’ve got the recipe for yogurt and I’m sure I can make my own. Hummus, I still have not investigated how to make my own. Pita bread is essential. I did find bakery bread in a paper bag, but with a plastic or cellophane window, and I really didn’t like the bread.

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
Make more things from scratch instead of buying ready made.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
Junk mail! I will make more calls to cancel mail. This was election week, so the mail was heavier than usual. Every good cause that I get interested in results in a deluge of mail!!!

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
Keep trying!

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